Economics and the mid-life crisis have much in common: Both dwell on foregone opportunities

C'est la vie; c'est la guerre; c'est la pomme de terre . . . . . . . . . . . . . email: jpalmer at uwo dot ca

. . . . . . . . . . .Richard Posner should be awarded the next Nobel Prize in Economics . . . . . . . . . . . .

Monday, September 26, 2005

Georgia Schools Close to Save Gas;
Really Dumb Economic Policy

Most of Georgia's public schools will be closed Monday and Tuesday, taking two "early snow days," in an effort to conserve fuel in the aftermath of hurricanes Katrina and Rita.

Gov. Sonny Perdue asked for the closings on Friday, estimating that closing all of the state's schools would save about 250,000 gallons of diesel fuel by idling buses, plus an undetermined amount of gasoline by allowing teachers, staff members and some parents to stay home. Electricity also would be conserved by keeping the schools closed, he said.

... As he did in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, Perdue also asked residents — and ordered government agencies — to limit nonessential travel and use commuting alternatives including telecommuting, car pooling and four-day work weeks.

This is a ridiculous response to expected reductions in gasoline supplies. If the state is concerned about line-ups and shortages, they should increase the state gasoline tax. Higher prices, even in the short-run, work wonders at reducing the quantity demanded, and a higher gasoline tax would have the desired effect.
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